Skip to main content

Full text of "Muscle Shoals Baptist Association Minutes 1854"

See other formats




Birmingham, Alabama 

Muscle Shoals Baptist Association 



^ v. 1. 1850 

v. 2. 1854 

v. 3. 1855 

v. 4. 1858 

v. 5. 1859 

v. 6. 1861 

v. 7. 1867 

v. 8. 1871 

v. 9. 1885 










1. 1888 

2. 1891 

3. 1892 

4. 1893 

5. 1895 

6. 1896 

7. 1897 

8. 1898 

9. 1899 

v. 10. 1887 

v. 20. 1900 



TTo * 




, • E. 






melt Jijjials Association yii 




Qommenring on Friday the twenty- ninth day of September, 1864. 



18 54. 




. ii 






I . 

• A 





^m^ •* . 

. :' i 






t I 


* ■ *• 



FaiDvr, Sept. 29, 1854. , 
The delegates to the Muscle Shoals Association met with il e 

Baptist Church of Christ at Moulton in Lawrence County, Ala , on 

Friday, Sept. 29th, 1855. 

The Introductory Sermon V as delivered by Elder Wrc. H. Bprks- 

dale, from Isaiah, 21st chap., and 11th verse: ''Watchman whet of 

tht niglU" After intermission, prayer by Brother J. Gunn. Jt. B. 

Burleson in the chair as Moderator, and E. Windes acting as Clerk. 

1. Letters from churches called for aud names of delegates en- 

2. Went into el ^tion of Moderator and Clerk, which resulted in 
the choice of Elder 11. B. Burleson as Moderator, and Elder E. 
diodes Clerk. 

3. Appointed regular standing committees as follows: On devo- 
tional exercises — A. Ilouk, L. D. Mass^ngale, G. lowler, H. A. 
Owen and C. C. Gewin. On Missions — A. Ilouk, C. Gibson, C. C. 
Oewin, E. R. Stanley, A. Jarman and T. Ashford. . On Education — 
J. Gun.i, Wm. II. Barksdale, W. W. Wilhite a I P. M. Musgrovc. < 
On Finance — C. Gibson, A. H. Str.nlcy and G. Fowier. On Docu- 
ments — D. Bridenthrall, A. Johnson and J. Fields. On Sabbath 
Schools— A. ilouk, J. C. Roberts and N. Baley. On the State of 
Religion — D., Wm. J. Thompson and J. K. Lynn. On 
Fellowship — L. D. Massengj.le, II. Rieves and J. D. Cle<»r. 

Adjourned until Saturday morning 9 o'clock. Prayer by Brothr^ 


,____„__ Saturday Morning, 9 o'clock. 

Th^^^JjPp^uiet pursuant to adjournment. Prayer by Bn>. 

1 .^Called for report of the committee of arrangements, which 
was presented; read and adopted. 

2. Called the names of delegates, and marked absentees. 

3. Called for petitionary letter; five were presented, via: New 
Friendship, Concord, Frankford, Duncan's Creek and New Hope, 
which were read, received, and the right hand of Fellowship extend- 
ed by the Moderator. 

4. Called for corresponding letters; two were received, one from 
Liberty Association, borue by Brother Pomroy, and one from ^ig 
Bear Creek, by Brother Wheelock, which were read and those breth- 
ren invited to seats with us. Also, received a package of Minutes 
from North River Association. 

5. Invited visiting brethren to seats with us, and Brethren Edmis- 
ton, Vanhoose and Fuller came forward. 

6. Suspended the regular order of business and appointed a com- 
mittee to draft suitable preamble and resolutions expressive of our 
feelings on partiug with Brother Edmistou, who is about to leave 
our Association, whereupon Elder J. Gunn, J. D. Massengale and 
P. M. Musgrove were appointed said committee. See Appendix F_ 

7. The President of the Board of Trustees of the Baptist Female 
Institute at Moulton presented a report which waa read and ordered 
to be printed in the Minutes. See Appendix, B. 

8. Delegates from the General Association were invited to seats 
with us, and J. N. Owen came forward. 

9. Called for report of Missionary labor; three were presented,, 
viz: From Brother Jennings for 1st district; Brother Verser for 2d 
district, and Brother Fields for the 4th district, all of which were 
read and referred to committee on Missions. 

10. Called for report on Minutes, and a package of Minutes were 
presented and longer time granted to complete the file. 

1 1 . The following resolutions offered by Brother W. II. Ba/ks- 
dsde, was received and adopted : 




Rk30l»ki>, That we change our Union meetings 




<oas meeting (or Delegates where churches have net 
ittg). The ostensible design of which shall be the hj. 
meetings and ministers to attend them. 

Rxsolvkd ruRTHKR, That it shall be the privilege of each District at her re- 
spective meeting* to appoint their own time and place herenfter for the hold- 
ing of said meetings. 

12. Appointed Minister's and Deacon's meetings in lieu of Union 
meetings, to be beld as follows: 1st district, with Macedonia, com- 
mencing Friday before the 3d Sunday in April next; 2d district, 
with Enon, Friday before the 3d Sunday in May; 3d district, Jlount 
Zion, Friday before the 3d Sunday in June; 4lh district, Friday 
before the lit Sunday in June at Harmony. 



1. Query No. 1. What course should a church pursue with a 
member who refuses to pay his Pastor or bis proportional part of 
the church expenses? Referred to committee who recommends the 
following answer, which is adopted by the Association: It is the du- 
ty of the church to discipline such members, tbat is to deal with 
them for the sin of coveteousness. 

Query No. 2. What should be done with members who havd 
moved off from their church without their letter, and lives for years 
in that condition and do not apply for letter of dismission? 

Query No. :>. What should be done with a member who calls for 
his letter and gets it and will not join some other church of the 

same faith and order? 

The Coiuuiilte to whom was referred a que.-tion with regard to members, 
■soring from their churches, without letters of dismission, Believe it would 
be advisable for the church or churches; to address such members by letter, and 
require them to apply for letter'a of dixmission ; and if they should fail to do 
so exclude them ; and if Fiich members pli»ce of residence or address should 
ucil t>o known by the Church, erase their names from the Church Book. 

2nd. If any member receives a letter of dismission, and fails to join some 
«,ther Church of the same faith and order, and refuses to comply with the re- 
quisitions of his Church, we believe it would bo proper to excommuuicate 
such. All of which is respectfully submitted. 

WM. J. THOMPSON, Chairman. 

Adjourned until half past 1 o'clock, P. M. Prayer by Brother 

i » 

•' ! 


' i 

' I 

M/m-fttiAt KvkMimi, I J o'clock, 1*. M. 
jt pursuant to adjournment, 
resolution was read and adopted: 
Besolved, That we require nil newly constituted churches to ex- 
f prus their views on Missions. 

2. On motion, the following delegates were appointed to the Gene- 
ral Association, viz: J. N. Owen, F. 0. Owen, J. Gunn, E. Ellett, 
W. II. Barksdale, It. J. Jennings, It, B. Burleson, Wm. J. Thomp- 
son, L. D. Massengale and J. C. Roberts. 

3. It was moved and seconded that delegates be appointed to cor- 
responding Associations, whereupon the following appointments 
were made, viz: To Liberty — Wm. IT. Barksdale, J. Gunn and Wm. 
J. Thompson; to Big Bear Creek — J. K. Lynn, R. J. Jennings and 
G. W. Harget; to North River Association— J. C. Roberts, J. Gunn 
and Wm. Harris; to Cherokee Association — J. Fields, M. A. Verser 
and W. W. Welhite; to Judson Association — II. A. Owens, Thos. 
Ash ford and E. It. Stanley. 

4. It was moved and seconded that a committee of three be ap- 
pointed to define the duties and powers of the Executive Committee, 
whereupon J. Gunn, A. Houk and P. M. Musgrovc were appointed 
said committee, after which D. Bridenthrall was added to said com- 
mittee. See Appendix, G. 

5. Called for the Circular Letter, which, on motion, was read 
and ordered to be spread upon the Minutes. [Appendix, A.J 

6. The committee on Fellowship presented their report, which was 
read and the subject was again referred to a committee of three, 
who were instructed to report on each item separately. A. Houi, 
G. D. Clear and C. C. Gewin were appointed said committee. Sec 
Appendix, E. 

7. An invitation was given Brother J. II. Graves to a seat with* us, 
which he accepted as the representative of the Tennessee Publica- 
tion Society and the Southern Bible Board, located at Nashville, 

8. The committee on the State of Religion presented their report, 
which was read and adopted. 





0. The committer on Documents submitted Ufe*r! 
was adopted. Appendix 11. 

IC. On motion, a committee of three were appointed to examine 
Brother Bailey and other applicants who wish to become beneficia- 
ries at Union University. Thos. Ashford, J. Gunn and L. D. Mas- 
sengale were appointed said committee. Appendix, I. 

11. On motion, New Prospect Church was granted a letter of 
dismissal according to her petition. 

v 12. The Association agreed to convene next year with Mt. Plea- 
sant Church, Lawrence county, Brother J. Gunn to preach the In- 
troductory sermon, Brother Thompson hi.s alternate, Brother Windes 
to write the eircutar letter. Brother Musgrovc his alternate. 

Adjourned until 3 o'clock Monday morning. 



Brother J. II. Graves preached in the forenoon to a very large 
and attentive audience. The afternoon sermon was preached by 
Brother BridenthraH, who also had a very large and attentive con- 
gregation. Brother Barksdale preached at night to a crowded 
house. We trust that Eternity will unfold the happy result. 



Mondat Mob ninu, R o'clock. , 
The Association met pursuant to adjournment. Praver by Bro. 

1. Called for the report of the committee on Fellowship, which 
was read and adopted. Appendix, J. 

3. Suspended the regular order. of business and adopted the fol- 
lowing resolutions in relation to the Tennessee Baptist: 

"Whereas, A. Campbell, in the late issties of his Harbingir. has declared 
that the Tennessee Baptist is not a correct exponent ot the view. * of the de- 
nomination in the South-west; and 

Wiierhas, Re declares he is warranted to believe this from the private com- 
munications of Sundry Baptist ministers whose names he dotb no! give. 

Id solved, That we, tho Muscle Shoal Association, do hereby nxpnstm 


litor of the Tennessee Baptist as a correct expounder 
and practice as Baptists, and as a strong defender and lover of this 

mitive Apostolic Christianity, for which ttc are so earnestly admonished in 

e Scriptures to contend. 

Resolved further, That our Moderator be hereby requested by special com- 
munications to demand, either through the Tennessee Baptist or otherwise, of 
A. Campbell the names of those brethren who have informed him that the 
Baptists do not regard the Tennessee Baptist as a true exponent of our faith 
and practice. 

Resolved furthermore. That we rr commend all our brethren, if they are not, 
tobocome «t once Mibbcriljcra to the bold and uncompromising advocate and 
organ of our denomination South and West, known as "The Tennessee 

4. Took up the case of non-fellowship between Shilo and Gunt- 
ersville Church. The correspondence was read and a committee of 
three appointed to visit Guntersville Church, viz: P. M. Musgrove, 
II. Fowler and J. Fields. 

5. The committee on Education submitted their report, which was *. 
read, and Brother Graves being loudly called, rose and addressed 
the Association in an effective speech on the claims o*f Education 
upon our denomination, at the conclusion of which $1500 was 
promptly pledged to pay the debt of the Baptist Institute at Moul- 
ton, and S>300 for beneficiaries at Union University, who desire to 
prepare for the ministry. See Appendix, E. 

G. On motion, a committee of three was appointed to examine 
those desiring to become beneficiaries and superintend the funds. 1 — 
J. Ounn, A. Houk and A. A. Burleson were appointed said commit- 
tee, and Win. J. Thompson Treasurer. Appendix, K. 

Adjourned until 1 o'clock, P. M. Prayer by Brother Poraroy. 

Monday Evkmxo, 1 o'clock, P. M. 
The Association met pursuant to adjournment. 

1. The committee on Sabbath Schools presented their report, 
which was read and adopted. Appendix, L. 

2. The rcpoit of the committee on Missions was read and adopted. 
Sec Appendix, C. 

3. The committee on the powers and dutiesW the Executive Com- 
mittee submitted their report, which was adopted. Appen. N. 


4. On notion, a committee of five was apjx. , 13?H* 

power, and dutie. of the Board of Trustee, of the 6*. .W&W. 

M..N, and to designate the manner of ; -d B^ard and 
their term of office, and report to the «* AssoctaUon. A. Honk 
J Gunn.Wm. II. Barksdale, D. Bridenthrall and G. W. Harget 

"T T^ — ^eT .o draft preamble and -**- * 
relation to Brother Edmiston. report the following, was read 
and ordered to be printed in the Minutes: 

6. A*M. That this Association tender to the eiu«n. of Maul- 
ton and vicinity iU thanks for the kind and hospitable manner m 
which its delegates and visitors ha.e been entertamcd dunng ,ta 

86 f^W.*./. That Brother Graves be allowed an opportunity of 
preseming the" claims of the Tennessee ^^J"^ "~ 
Lt of the Southern Bible Board, located at Na.hv.le Teno 

Brother Graves having addressed the Assoc.. ton » 
length, Brother Wheelock was perm.lted to present the clauns 
the Bible Itevisiou Association. 

8. The following resolu.ion was read and adopted: 
P, aol rcd, That in view of the great want of the .ord « - 
penally amongst the Chinese, in Asia and Cal.forn.a hat we re 
lommend all Pastors of churches w.thm *e bounds of *«*»~ 
ation to lay the claims of the Southern B.ble Board before thetr 
; "pective churches during the month of December next, and oil c 
whatever amont the churches may contnbute, and retmt to the 
Treasurer at Nashville, Term. 

9 xVdopted the report of the Executive Committee. • 

,0. On'motion, five delegates were appointed to attend the next 
Bienial Convention, vi* P.*. Musgrove, A. A. Burleson, W». H. 
Barksdale, D. Brid enthrall and G. Fowler. 

II Instructed the clerk to distribute the Minutes » proportion to 
the amount contributed by each church. 

,2. On motion, the committee on Finance was instructed to pay 
the three Missionaries for six months* labor. 

Adjourned until 7 o'clock,' P. M. Prayer by Brother Carson. 







T Monday Evening, 7 o'clock, P. M. 

wsocialion met pursuant to adjournment. 

1. It was moved and seconded that the Association hear the re-, 
port of Brother Carson who had labored as Missionary without hav- 
ing been employed by the Association or Executive Board. After 
hearing said report, the committee on Finance were instructed to 
pay Brother Carson ninety dollars as a donation. 

2. It was moved that the agent for raising Missionary funds be 
required to report the amount contributed by each church; also, to 
state what churches he failed to visit. - 

3. The commiitee on Finance submitted its report, which was- 
read and adopted. 

4. On motion, the pledges given our Missionary agent on the five- 
years' plan, were released from paying the same. 

5. On motion, a committee of three wa3 appointed to employ 
Missionaries to labor the present year. Thos. Ashford, A. Houk 
and a.. Jarman were appointed said committee, who entered at once 
on the discharge of said duty, and after retiring and consultation, 
reported the names of Brother E. Y. Vanhoose and Brother Wm. 
II. Bnrksdale. Brother Vanhoose accepted the appointment, but 
Brother Barksdale declined. 

6. On motion, it was made the duty of those laboring as Missio- 
naries to report their field of labor the ensuing year. 

7. On motion, the following agents were appointed to distribute 
the Minutes, viz: G. W. Harget for 1st district, H. A. Owen for 2d 
district, A. Houk for 3d district, and P. M. Musgrove for the 4th 
district. Brother A. A . Burleson is to receive the Minutes and for- 
ward them to agents. 

8. On motion, it was ordered that 1500 copies of the Minutes be 

9. It was moved and seconded that the Executive Committee be 
impowered to superintend the Missionary operations the ensuing; 

10. On motion, the following brethren were appointed the Execu- 
tive Committee, viz: Thos. Ashford, E. R. Stanley, L. D. Massen- 
gale, II. A. Owen and F. C. Owen. ' 

38 Wft 




11. It was moved and seconded that Brother E. \Js' 
allowed $20 for his services as clerk. 

12. On motion, it wa3 agreed that the circular of the Baptist Fe~ 
male Institute at Moulton be printed on theback of the Minutes. 

13. On motion, the following committee were appointed to assist 
the clerk in preparing the Minutes for the press, viz: J. Gnnn, A. 
Ilouk and A. A. Burleson. 

14. On motion, the Association adjourned to meet with the Mt. 
Pleasant Church on Friday before the iirst Lord's day in October, 
1855. After prayer by Brother Verser and singing, the brethren, 
gave the parting hand. 

R. B. BURLESON, Moderator. 
E. Windej, Clerk. 








BaaroiiKN: You have, by appointment, requested a letter on Church Discip- 
line. The subject is always important; for with it is connected the usefulness 
and salvation of churches and individuals. For the lack of wholesome Dis- 
cipline, how much our churches have suffered, in their piety, strength and ef- 
ficiency! It is therefore especially to be regretted that the space, which should 
B*vcr be transcended in a Circular, is quite too limited for a fnll consideration 
of he subject. If, however, by an epitome, the subject shall in any degree 
become better understood, and its importance more fully realized, something 
will be gained. 

VV ha* are the occasion* which call for the administration of Church Discipline? 

1 . Un.scriptural conduct. The Bible'is supreme in authority; all acts should 
be tried by its teachings. There is no duty which christians should perform 
which is r.ot enjoined by either the precepts or spirit of the Bible; nor is there 
cry wrong, any vice, or any tin which the Bible does not condemn. If. there- 
fore, n church member be guilty of u private offence against a brother, or a 
puhlic offence against the church, or, in general, if ho be guilty of any sin, he 
must b« tried, and acquitted or condemned by the teachings of the Bible. 
This is the touch -stone to which all actions must be brought— this is the sta- 
tute book of the church wherein God himself hath prescribed the laws which 
thall govern the member ; of his Zion. However it may be with other religious 
denominations, with us, a Baptist has a right, on trial, to demand scriptural 
authority agaimt the act with which he is charged; and that too, whatever 
rulf s and resolutions stand upon the Church Book If the act for which he is 
tried, is condemned by the Scriptures, lie must repent, or be excommunicated; 
if otherwise, he must be acquitted, — though a thousand resolutions are against 
him. It is indeed competent for a church to enact rules and regulations for 
the government of its members, but enactments owe their vitality, their 
very life and force to the fact that they arc faithful transcripts of the Biblo. 
If such rules are accurately not a portion of the Bible, they cannot affect, they 
cannot .touch a church member in the least degree for a single moment; for, let 
it never be forgotteu, it is a maxim in our economy, that nothing but the Bible 
shall govern a Baptist. In a word the Divine Record is our constitution, there- 
fore every rule, not according with this, is unconstitutional and an absolute 
nullity. Ilence the error and folly of adopting and enacting an endless va- 






riety of tests of christian church fellowship, fine church -"will noi fellowship' 
a man if he be a Mason, or a Son of Temperance; and in some sections of our . 
country, a man, no matter how good, how worthy and how christian, who is I 
blare holder is bereft of fellowship and doomed to torment before the judg- 
ment day. Now such tests as these, — and it is the least that can be said of j 
them, — are supremely ridiculous and gross abominations. No matter what a 
man's social connections mayb e, whether he be a Mason, or anti-Mason, Tern* 
perance, or anti-Temporance, Psycologist, Phrenologist or Spirit Rapper, if his 
principles and conduct are unchristian, bring him to trial, and acquit or con- 
demn him by the teachings of the Bible. 

But if we have urged that nothing but the Bible should govern us, we must 
also insist that that should govern us. Whatever is noted in the Scriptures 
as being unchristian, is an occasion for the administration of Discipline.— 
Here, alas, how delinquent the church! How many poisonous vines grow in 
the church, producing like the rank ivy, decay and crumbling in whatever 
they touchl How many roots of bitterness which absorb the vigor and 
strength and vitality of the church I There are those in the church living in 
the habitual indulgence of avarice, one of the most henious sins which mor- - 
tals can commit, and yet Discipline slumbers, and such ungodly, remorseless 
beings are lulled into the delusion that they will get to heaven. What a de- 
lusion! When the great Winnowing Day of Judgment shall come, and the 
wheat shall be separated from the chaff, the breath of God will waft their di- 
minutive, shriveled eouls into lire that is not quenched. Mercenary, misera- 
ble misers, with inflated luuga hypocriticully talk of the full, free blessed 
salvation of the Lord's flospel, just as if their rust-covered, money patched 
souls were capable of a gingle! Their hearts are avarice eaten, worse than 
weavel-eattn, or moth ea'en. 

Avarice is, in the Bible, classed with the most enoimoas sins of which — I 
will not say christians — depraved mortals canbe guilty. "No whore monger, 
nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance 
in the kingdom of Christ and of Ood." "Being filled with all unrighteous- 
ness, fornication, wickedness, covetous nets, maliciousness; full of envy, mur- 
der, debate, deceit, malignity; whispers, backbiter*, haters of God, despiteful, 
proud, boasters, inventers of evil things, disobedient to parents, without un- 
derstanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmer- 
ciful, who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things 
are worth of death; not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do 
them." Such is the dreadful group of crimes, in the very centre of which 
stands with all its rapacity and meanness, thin-lipped, hard-eyed, twisted* 
visaged Avarice; and God, as if the other fearful crimes in the catalogue were, 
by comparison, nothing, glances over t!iem and fixes his eye upon the 'cove- 
tousness which is idolatry,' as "the abominable thing, ray 6oul hates." What 
a sin that must be which turns the loving heart of God into hate? They re- 

K^ .:. s r ■< ' *#«># %*« T* 'iviJP^-i ■ 



* r* • r 

.<j%" cwvc eTcr 7 thing irom God, and with reluctance give for his cause the merest 
^pittance. The church is guilty for not lopping them oft', as dry, sapless, 
Jp£f,^rultle69, dead and decayed branches. 

r. ! 2. A departure from the faith of the Gospel, is also an occasion for the ad- 
i;" ; ''$-s'mini8tration of Discipline'. A church would be committing moral suicide, 
'&» ' would he deeply culpable, if she admitted or retained persons holding notions 
at war with Gospel symmetry and piety. "I would they were even cut off 
which trouble )ou." "I have a few thing* ngaint lliec, because thou hast 
there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, — so hast thou also thein that 
bold the doctrine of the Nicolaitancs- which thing I hate." Now we com- 
mand you brethren in the nanw> of our,Lord Jesus Christ that ye withdraw 
yourselves from every brother that walktth disorderly, nud not after the tra- 
dition which he received of us." 

3. Occasions of Discipline sometimes occur from excommunications, and 
the subsequent conduct of the perilous excommunicated. If an individual be 
excluded from one church, and lie afterwards asks admission into another, 
what should the cliurch ilius petitioned do? They should inquire into ihe 
causes of his exclusion, and if it be ascertained that, he was excluded for good 
reasons, the church which he Iihs petitioned -should not receive him, without 
true repentance Cut if it be ascerluimd that he was excluded for untcriptu- 
ral reason?, he should at once be leceired; for the first church having without 
Scriptural reasons excluded a worthy member, has forfeited all claim for a 
recognition of her sets of excluding him. It is a tif.nge however simong Bap- 
tist Churches to *o far r< cognize the r.ction of sifter ehuiehes as to presume* 
such action right until the opposite is ascertained. This usjge accords with 
both reason r.ud &e-tipture. At ,n<i ft™ t>">c. >t is a principle fundamental 
in Urn church polity i.f the Gospel, lhat each church is an independent 

How should Discipline be conducted? Space will not »llow us faithcr to am- 
plify — and therefore we briefly sketch (lie remaining topics of our subject. 
For au offence private, or committed l>y one I rolher against another ,'the rule 
is laid down in Matthew: Private Remonstrance, Public Admonition— and, on 
the failure of thee, ExrwqmiinicV.ioii. p\>r an offence to the church, the 
rule is much the same, the chinch, in remonstrating, rcliog by committee. 
Discipline should be administered faithfully, impattiullg and in the Spirit of 

The Ends oi Church Discipline. These ends arc th» amendment of the trans- 
gressor — purification of Ihe church, and tlte pre-clin-.ii n of unworthy persons. 
Alas that our churches permit Discipline to sleep, ihus leaving our beauty 
marred and Our strength decayiug and decayed. Wo a e, I fear, my I rethre n , 
wofully remiss in disciplining those! in the fold, and in scrutinizing those 
■entering — The strength of the church is in her purity. 


, (tf) 

To the Muscle Shoals Assjciation of Baptists, eorivenedvL 

Moulton, Lawrence county) Alabama : 

On behalf of "The Trustees of the Baptist Female Institute at Moulton', 
and in conformity with cot.iin resolutions parsed at your mot-ting in" 
October 1850, establishing the Institute, I beg to submit the following Report: 

Since the last annual report of the Board uf Trustees, ^liich bears date the 
30th day of September, 1853, tliey liave had but two meetings, one on llu- 
29th of June, 1854, when the resignation of Jesse W. Michaux, as Trustee, 
was tendered and accepted, and John N. Walker, of Moulton, was elected to 
fill the vacancy thus occasioned. Tbe Board, therefore now consists of the 
following persons, viz: Thomas M. Peters, Isaac N\ Owen, Amos .laimon, Lc» i 
F. Warren, Charles Gibson, Aaron A. Burleson, Jaim-.-, AimMrong, Lgg'estc.n 
D. Townes, James Wise, Isaac Y»a Eaton, Wm. M'Kclvy, John Prewit sad 
John N. Walker; of whom Thoma.-. M. Peter*. L>»ac N. 'iven, Amos Jarruon. 
Levi F. Worren, Charles Gibson, Aaron A. I'urlcsuii, Jamtii Aluistioiig, and 
Eggleston D. Townes, wire members at the board at the time of the inco-po- 
ration of the Institute, on I He 7th of Pel rusry, IFS3. The others have- been 
sine* appointed by the As. or ■ h-.clci; by iIm- to fill vacancies 
occasioned by resignations 

In this countxion 1 le* leave to call the attention at 'he Association to trc 
second section of the act of incorporation, li is in these: words, \iz: "That the 
number of said Trustee* shall be, aid they idi'ill •!>•* elected or ap- 
pointed by said Muscle fehoals Asportation of Baptists in Sfeeh manner and for 
such length of lime a* slid Ass>»ci;iiioii of fi; pli»ts stall think proper: Pro- 
vided, That the above named persons and their successors shall always con- 
tinue in oflice, until their suce-cscort. shall be only « beted or appointed in their 
stead: And providrd Jiirthtr. That in c*se said Association of luptists shall 
neglect or in anywise omil U» fill vacancies llr.t may at any time occ;r among 
eaid Trustees, fie-i said Tru ices, (a majoiity of the i!ut.d«er tlun in office > 
concurring,) may lit! such vacancy or as may hs.ppt it in this body 
until the next legular election or aj poiutruent of VruMeta dtall be made by 
said Association of bi»pi : -ts. 

From this it is evidi ut that life- Association lias the tr.o-t ample powtrto 
control the corporation, by limifiog the tt-im of oilier of the Trurt**» », acd 
upon the expiration of ifce ti nn tk*t may Its fi\« , u on, to fib .he Board, by ntr* 
appointments, with s:;ch | .isons as shall mos' surely keep the Jottimle within 
the sphere intei.d»d, at iis establishment. Thus bir, Iiuwcvit, tl ■ Board of 
Trustee"* hav>- not bi-eu advised what term of ollice it may pit ase the Associa- 
tion to presciibe to them or how they a.o to be assured that such vacancies in 
the Board a* may be liiled by (hem are acceptable to those tno»t deeply inler- 
c>t«d iu their action. To obviate « inbarrassiueutn that may arise fn in this ' 



is desirable that 


some permaneut regulation may be present*:*! upon 
the subject, which may serve as a guide to the Board in their future action. 
t^-t'At their other meeting, on the 29th of July, 1854, the Board continued 
Eld. Richard B. Burleson as Principal of the Institute, until the end of the 
present session, which terminates on the 23d of December next; and accepted . 
the services of Mrs. Susan W. Leigh as Instructress in Mu?ic. 

The edifice for the Institute was so far finished on the 28th da)' of June last 
as to admit of being occupied for the purpose of the Examination, which then 
took place. Fortius purpose it was then occupied and has since remained 
under the control of the Board; though it is understood that soinc of the plast 
ering has not been finished in a manner acceptable to the Building Commit- 
tee, under the superintendence of whom the work has been prosecuted to 

Oa Monday, the 4th day of September instant, the School was transferred to 
the Institute Building, and there regularly opened under the au*picn* of the 
Board. The present number of rcholnrs is thirty fi w, with reasonable grounds 
to hope that this number will bu increased to forty or more by an early day 
in next month, And it is gratifying to add that the health of the pupils has 
been, as huretofore, almost uninterrupted by sickness since the date of my last 

Owing to the fact that the accounts between the Building Committee and the 
Contractors who completed the edifice for the Institute, yet remain unliqui- 
dated, I am not able to rtport the precise amount of the debt for which the 
Institute is bound, and for which the contractors have a lien upon the build- 
ing; but it is supposed to be not less than the sum heretofore suggested in my . 
last annual report Possibly it is needless for us to suggest, that, some proper 
plan for the ultimate payment of this debt should be advised at an early day 
as practicable, and pursued with euergy and activity. And in as much as the 
Association deservedly eDJoys a high position for the wisdom and prudence of 
its recommendations among those to whom we must principally apply for aid, 
it is earnestly hoped, that, during the present session, t trident measures will 
be adopted to relieve the Institute from the pressure of bo serious and so 
threatening an embarrassment. 

THOS. M. PETERS, Tres't of the Board of Trust**. 

Moulton, Ala., Sept 30, 1854. 

; J? 



Your Committee ou Missions beg leave to report, That although the system 
of Missionary operation adopted at our last Association, has not fully succeed- 
ed to the anticipation of its friends, yet we are of opinion that it is the best 
plan we have ever adopted, and we think with a few amendments it is perhaps 



tha best wp. ran adopt. We would therefore<fTitlly reconf 
lowing amendments: ni^fl' 

1st. Dispense with our agent and make il infninhtfitt. upon cute 
i«> take pledges un I take up collection-* wherever 1hV tio»jfclifi?i 
ministering brethren who are in charge of churenes tot akc pledges 
lect fuitda for missionary purposes; (his they nro iioWxpectoiYtn WJbirTperbJ 
but to do it through the deacons or by appointing an agent for that ffttrpose 
their respective churches. All monies collected to be returned to iho next as- 
sociation with a repott from each church, showing the amount collected, and 
jiIho the amount pledged for future Missionary fund, and by this arrangement 
if properly carried out, as much or perhaps more fundi could be raised than 
have boen done the past year, and not incur an expense of keeping an agent 
in the field. 

2nd. Appoint two efficient Missionaries to lals>r the whole year, devoting 
a portion of their time to assisting in holding protracted meetings, and when 
not thus employed, preach to the destitute churches. 

Your Committe are further cf opinion that an Executive Committee should 
lxj appointed of at lca>-'t five members whose duty it shall be to preside over 
the whole Missionary oparatiou, to fill vacancies should any occur, and to de- 
vise ways and means of raising funds, <fcc. 

Your Committee have examined tin; reports on Missionary labor for the 
past year showing that Brothers Ycrser, Fields and Jennings, each labored six 
months notwithstanding they were- in May last notified by our Executive Com- 
mittee whose duty it was to preside over our finances, that they must .suspend 
their labors from the fact of the ill success of our agent in raiding funds ; your 
committee report upon these fncts that the Association may be advisrd of eve- 
ry thing connected with our Missionary service, and order payment as your 
body may deem just and equitable. 

In conclusion of this already too lengthy repot t, your committee would sug- 
gest the propriety of raising a standing fund, any surplus on hand to be used 
in the purchase of denominational Hooks and Tracts to lo disposed of by our 
Missionaries and agents at the various towns in our association 

All of which is respectfully submitted, A HOUK, Cbm'n. 


Education is the spiriL of t lie age in which we live. Truly, we live in an 
age of rapid improvement ; men every where are cry\u^.rilucatii'it 'ducation ; 
the arts and sciences are all advancing with tho greatest rapidity ; light and 
moral influence are breaking in upon us from all parts of our happy country, 
developing the .genius and power of the human mind. Every where men are 
busy, persevering, enterprising. In .ill the high and laudable pursuits of life, 



#Bk- f 

id'watcIiAroril is. onward ami upward. Education stands su- 

the^UHmieiifs^snve the grace that, prepare* the soul for Heav- 

tff itVuti)ity, its eleva'ing and dignifying powers and liappy 


P* rH"{-"\ 

a«nntfortd jaWwakeTiporrthis subject; almost 
s Sflenomi^itfoTis of i>r»fetsed Clinstians, order 

* 1 

t everywhere we see the vari- 
ers of secret Societies, Towns 
and neighborhoods erecting their Colleges and Seminaries, the grand objtct 
of which is to educate their Sons and Daughters, that they may he useful and 
happy. We, the Baptist denomination are doing much forthe accomplishment 
of this glorious object. This Association has made a beautiful start in es- 
tablishing a Seminary of high grade in our midst. Greater responsibility rests 
upon us now brethren, if possible for the completion of this building than did 
before we commenced it. It is a responsibility that we cannot shake off if we 

Therefore Resolved, That we awake to a lively interest and more vigorous 
effort for the cause of education in our own Association, and that we rally 
around the Baptist Female Institute, located at Moulton, and take immediate 
and persevering eteps to Telieve it of its present embarrassment. 

Very respectfully submitted, JACKSON GUNN, Chairman. 


(L) • 

Your Committee on Sabbath schools beg leave to report , That in their opin- 
ion the great importance of a well organized Sabbath school in every Church 
in bur Association, cannot be too strongly urged upon our brethren. Notwith- 
standing we have again and again called the attention of our denomination to 
this important subject, we are pained to see from the reading of the letters 
from the churches composing this Association, but very few churches have en- 
gaged in the glorious Avork of training the youthful mind in the way of life 
and salvation. It is obvious to every thinking mind that the first and highest 
duty of Christian parents is to train their children in the nurture and admoni- 
tion of the Lord, and experience has well attested the fact that a well regula- 
ted Sabbath 6chool contributes more to this grand object than any other mode 
of instruction. Your committee feel the importance of this branch of Chris- 
tian duty, and but for the fear of being too importunate, we could offer many 
arguments in favor of Sabbath schools. 

In conclnsion your committee would respectfully recommend that our min- 
istering brethren l»e earnestly requested to urge upon their respective church- 
es their duty in organizing Sabbath schools, and furnishing them with suita- 
ble libraries. \AU of which is respectfully submitted, 

A. HOUK, Chairman. 

v • • 

•<• px 





id fell 


Your Committee to whom was referred the< 
Church beg leave to report, That we have enqui 
and find that two members have bten received 
voluntarily withdrawn from Shilo Church tqfa^c' 
of its members. Your committee are of opinion thatribj« 
der and wrong in practice ; we hold tho doctrirjc'tbatthen; 
to pursue for a member to change his membership from omj 
and that is by letter recommending in full fellowship. ..JVoi 
opinion that the Church erred in this and also in appointing a d^eg^ not 
in fellowship, by which they violated the rule adopted at. our last Association 
in the case of Guntersville church. 

All of which is respectfully sbumittcd, 

A. HOUK, Chairman. 

Your Committee to whom was referred the case of fellowship in Moulton 
Church beg leave to report, That in our opinion as no querry has come up in 
the letter of that church, and as none of its delegation are charged with non- 
fellowship, all we can do as an association is to refer that church together 
with all others composing this ludy to our action and advice in the case of 
Guntersville church, that they may discipline their members accordingly, or 
be dealt with iu like manner. 

All of which is respectfully submitted, 

A. HOUK, Chairman. 

Your committee on the case of Fellowship in Guntersville church beg leave 
to report That this case was reported upon at our last association, and acted 
upon by the association and advice given.which advice has not been knecded. 
You. committee are of opinion that the Guntersville church is out ol order and 
should be promptly dealt with by the association. 

All of which is submitted, A. HOUK, Chairman. 


Your Committee who were appointed to consider the propriety of sustaining 
a young Minister at Murfreesboro' beg leave to report, That we conceive it to 
he both the duty and privilege of thisl.ody, to sustain at least one henencia- 
ry at Murfreesboro'; and that we recommend brother Nap»han Haihy as the 
man. We also recommend this body to take immediate rtvrn I* raise th« r. 
quisitc amount of money for the accomplishment of the t.l-jrcl. 

All of which is most respectfully kubiniUed. 

A • JACKSON OUNN, Churtnttt. 








f £0 

"(F) ^ 


h'rred the drafting of it-solutions in regard 
iiirQ to report: 

|ur« of brother Ediuiston to leave thin associa- 
jiy years pant labored in our midst, most faith- 


tian al 


deeply regret his removal from our midst, and 
jtfsly felt among us. 
fc regard him as a high-toued gentleman, x zealous Chri'* 
Rble anil efficient Minister of tL« Oospel of Christ, 
'harwe recommend bio. Edmibton to the Christian care and broth- 
erly love 'of all Baptists with whom his lot may hereafter be cast. 
Respectfully submitted. J. OUNN. 


Your Committee on the powers and duties of the Executive Board beg leave 
to report, That iu their" opinion whenever it becomes necessary to appoint an 
Executive Committee their duty as far us possible should be specified by the 
Association, which duty they should perforin, to the letter; said committer 
should also carry out all the business of the Association, and attend lo its in- 
terest generally and report to the next association aJl their acts. ^ 

All of which is respectfully submitted. J fitUTTS, Chm'fi. 


Tour Committee on Documents hefj leave to report, having examined the let- 
ters of all the churches can-fully, we find iu the letter from Tu^eumbin Church 
a request for advice in reference to destitution. 

2nd. A request from the l>lunts\illc. Church that the articles of Faith of th<* 
Baptist Church be incorporated or appended to the minutes of thin association. 

Hd. Mount Pleasant Church fMpiei-t that .the association recognizn brother 
Napoleau Bailey as a beneficiary at t'rhool. 

4th. Moulton Church request* a discontinuation of the present Missionary 
labors, and tho appoint m-nt of a Colporteur fur the disvmiinat'on of Tracts 
and Books. 

5th. Florence Church rtports entiro destitution, having no minister, nor 
preaching for s year. All of which we respectfully anbmit. 


■'vv;^ • ■ -'• 


The Committee on the State of 
formation conveyed to us by the letted 
it is apparent that there is a lamentab 
our churches — religion is at a low el 
the causes which produce this low state ul 

1. A lack of number and piety in our nl 

2. The want of development of Chri&ti 

3. The constitution of churches in too. cl 
in a measure destroying the strength which we "mi 

4. The neglect of the projx-r education of the consl 

5. The neglect of prayer, private, family and sociti 
G. The neglecting of Scriptural reading. 
All of which is respectfully submitted, * 

D. BRIDENTHALL. Chairman. 


The Committee on finance beg leave to make the fallowing report, to wit: 

Balance on hand last year, ... .... $8.00 

Amount of minute fund received at ibis association, - - - 57.95 

" *' missionary fund received from Agent Kdiuinson, • - 716,75 

" " do. ree'd. from Churches, 6.75 

" " Public Collection on Loru's day, .... 25.00 

" " Widows and Orphans fund ree'd. from Decatur church, - 20.00 
" Received since last Association for Rook* 1 , .... 

" Received frmo Courtland Clwrch for widows and Orphan*, 20 00 

Total, - - - -.- 
All of which is respectfully submitted, 



The Muscle bhoils Baptist As-ociation to ht-r sister Associations The Lib- 
erty Judfon, Big Hear Creek, Nonh River and Cherokee Haptist Associations, 
K-ndeth Christian salutation. 

Dear Buktheen: — As we prii.t our corresponding letter in our minutes, we 
hope you will receive a package of same with the messengers ; we wish to 
continue a correspondence. Our session has been very full of business of 
deep interest as you will m>c Jrom our minutes, nod also the place and time of 
nur next sfts^ioit. May the Koly Spirit direct you in the way of all tru»h, and 
finally save you in Heaven, is our \>myr tlirough Christ Soma. 

Yours In Gospel bonds, R. E. BURLESON, Moderator. 

Expch Windes, Clerk. " 








Mt. Mori ah, 
M. Finney, 


New Pro«pect, 

J. P. (iBAOK, . 


Mt. Pleasant, 
W. H . 1! AEKSDA LK 



D Bkuie.nthall, 





Town Creek. 
J . C. Robkbth, 
Salem, iu (Law.) 

.1. C. JtOHKKT'*, 

Harmony (J rove, 

trf w 

'. w" 












— 1- 

Ol HI O 

s 1 s 1 c 


u. 1 . » 


■ 1 

c- 1 pi 1 c- 


o o 



'a 'Clare, 

>?)0 00 00 3 00 00 57 144 201 $100 00 

13 3 00 1 00 (10 38 1 39 -11 00 

7tl» A. Hcnly, 10 G 00 10 2 00 105 5 110 25 00 

(Q. D. Clare, 

R. J.Jennings,} 

W. H. Biyan,, 00 00 3 1 00 53 1 54 26 25 

J. McClain,* 

! Letter 
butno 00 00 5 00 10 19 

delegates, J 

(W. Cress,* 

JM. Davis, 00 5 00 3 00 50 00 50 

f J. G. Wheel ock, 

If. P. Crage,* 

M. Hooker, 00 2 Oil 5 2 00 00 00 55 

(J. 3. McClain, * 

IT. S. Pope,* 

•JA. Johnson, 

•J No letter or del 

( W. H. Barksd 

•, A.. Johnson, 

00 00 2 100 4 113 21 50 N 

15 00 

-.a., jonnson, 

(A.. H.Stanley, 

lei. i 

»le,t } 

(i 2 00 2 1 1 lil 18'J 205 123 10 

00 3 00 25 50 81 102 00 


■Jr. Ashford, 
I A. G.Owen. 

IE. R. Stanly, 

-;(.. D. Massengale, 2 00 21 2 18 210 358 30 

(V. A. Ueaty, 

(1,0 Roberts,* 

^r.Grden. 2 5 1 10 8 105 25 220 .17 50 

(W. Harris, 

U.WiM', ' 

-J!. Heflin, 00 1 1 11 2 58 1 53 2 «0 

■(I. D.*,'* 

tW, T. Borum, 

ll. L. Stephens! 00 6 00 80 13 33 14 00 

,3 irl 

« ,-i| y *ff jffi; * g fr wiw ?^ 







R. B. Bprleson , 
Cave Spring, 
. J. C. Kobkrts, 

~<J^ Oakalona, 

T. S. Carson, 



Mt. /ion, (Lau ) 

J.P. CkJQE, 

Friendship, £ 

N. W. WlLHlTK, 


Mt. Pisgah, 
J. Gunn, 

Spring Hill, 

J. Gu*n, 
Decatur, . 
Shoal Creek, 
M. A. Vrhskh, 

Pleasant Hill, 

W.J. Thompson, 


Flint Creek, * ■■ 

J. K. Lynn, 



W. W. WUHR*. 

Cedar Plain, 
Hopewell, (M.) 
W. W. WlLHlTK, 
Cedar Plain, • 

Blue Spring, i 
M. A.Vkbser, 
Bine Spring, i 


CC. Gibson,* ^ ; 
U. Kitchens,. \r , 
(0. P. Me Daniel Q 

R. B. Burleson!* 

C. O. Gewin, . 
W. Boyd, 
W. Ireland, 
E. Devan, 
J. Johnson. 
R. P. Owen, 
T.J. Carson ,t 
J. Crownover,* 

\ No letter nor del. 

I W. O. Elkins,* 

J. Byler,* 
I M. little, 

J. McDaniel, 
J. Hunter,* 
J. Simpson, 



H. Reave?, &. 

W. Putnam, 

G. Ware,* 

W. J. Thompson,* 

J. Gunn,* 
A. Honk, 
A. A. Burleson, 
E. J Halbrooks, 

A. RatlifT, 
O. Ratliff,* 

D. B. Gregory,* 

B. Roden, 

J.K Lynn,+ 
J. Holney, 
T. Halbrookf 

E. W. Pope, 
A. Tapscot,* 
A. E. Pope, 

A>W. Nun,+ 
J. W. Gibson. 
N. Sandler, 

J.Kt. Clair, 
J. Weaver,* 
8. M. J. Benson, 

1 1 




A 5 3 31 1 32 

01 1 

4 3 1 130 

7 22 25 

17 12 3 4 1 61 13 

2*5 19 1 54 7 HI 

4 16 16 

H 5 1 1 71 71 

1 1 10 1 83 14 97 



1 2 H6 22 10R 

9 33 00 33 


12 50 


27 25 


10 50 



69 00 





K, CJ I 33 I £ I -J 

?'|.8|8 I srl H £1- § 

iQ 4 C 139 1? 155 $38 25 
1 1 31 1 3 37 
13 13 

2 00 












Mt- Tabor, 

W. Fowlef. 


J. Field, * • 

W. H. Musgmve.* 








Blountsville, - 

E. (t. Musgrove.t 

Brown's Valley, 

J. "Wliorton,* 

J. Field, 

G. Fowler, 




2(i s 



Big Spring 

B. Garrett.* 


, Good Hope, . 

F. Fullar,» 


yJ.K. Lynn, 

J. Garner, 

W. Livingston, 

P. M. MuFgrove.j 




Blountsville, ' 


P. M. MuROROVg, 

W. Whaley.f 








J. Turner," 

Guntersville, « 

Letter but no d«d. 
J. Field, f 








P. Say,* 

T. Stephens,* 

R. Masteson,* 









New Hope, . , 

H. H.Crow, 
P. H. May, 






Duncan's Creek, 

J. Sherriil, 



H. Plarco, 







A. Tubbs, 

* Concord, 

R. Stanley,* 

- __ _ — — 

M. Watson, 









B. H. Rnsall, 

New Friendship 

J.S. Key, 

J. D. Key,* 







*J - 


C. Womble, 

R. J. Jexninhs, 

H. 0. Landry, 








ft. Rikard, 

[I.I ' — 

— . 

22 00 

15 00 




19 .75 

20 Lift 
ISO 67 fi Ml 57 lG2213Fi]G.i:i0r, §910 35 

"Ordained Ministers' a^B^rtod |. Lieontihtes 7. Absentee* * . 



1 i